Craving an authentic Trader Vic’s Mai Tai while sitting on the beach, tubing down a river, or eating crabs at a family gathering, but don’t feel like lugging around the multiple bottles of rum, orange curacao, limes, and orgeat that it takes to make one? Well, Post Meridiem Spirts just started distributing their canned cocktails in Maryland, and they have you covered!
The Atlanta-based company sent me the full lineup of their canned cocktails, which can now be found at liquor stores all over Maryland. All of the cocktails feature fresh, high-quality ingredients that are similar to what you’d get at an upscale cocktail lounge. The five cocktails they offer are:
The Real Lime Juice Margarita: made with silver tequila, orange curacao, and lime juice
The Double Old Fashioned: made with bourbon, three different bitters, demerara syrup, and orange zest oil
The Lemongrass Vodka Gimlet: made with vodka, lime juice, simple syrup, and lemongrass oil
The 1944 Mai Tai: made with rum, lime juice, orange curacao, and orgeat
The No. Four Daiquiri: made with rum, maraschino liqueur, lime juice, and simple syrup
One cool thing about these cocktails is that they tell you the exact ingredients on the cans, so there’s no mystery about what you’re drinking, unlike other canned cocktails that are actually made from completely unrelated ingredients and chemicals. According to Post Meridiem, their cocktails feature 100% real lime juice and no artificial ingredients. And this honestly came through in my tastes tests. Over and over, my notes were “fresh”, “real lime taste”, and “well-blended, but can taste each ingredient”.
For those taste tests, I wanted to test their portability and emulate the experience of packing these in a cooler with a bag of ice, so I didn’t use crushed ice, which is what would traditionally be used for something like a Mai Tai. So I dumped regular ice into a glass, shook the cans, and poured them straight over the ice. That’s it: no other prep needed.
Those of you who know me or who have followed my YouTube channel know I’m a pretty big tiki cocktail connoisseur, and have had Mai Tais at Trader Vic’s locations around the world. So I was particularly excited to try Post Meridiem’s version, as the “1944” (the year Vic Bergeron invented the Mai Tai) in the name pegged it as the authentic Trader Vic’s recipe. And to my shock, it was actually pretty spot-on! I have no idea what rum combo they’re using, but it tasted like a legit Mai Tai!
Considering it was coming out of a can that took me two seconds to pour (as opposed to the five or so minutes it takes me to make one from scratch), I absolutely would not hesitate to serve this at a busy party. If I had to be nit-picky, I’d say that it could use an extra .5oz of rum – it was slightly less stiff than I prefer.
The other four cocktails were no less impressive. The Double Old Fashioned was stiff (in a good way, since whatever bourbon they’re using is high-quality), and the orange zest was front and center in both the nose and the taste, but not overpowering. The Hemingway Daiquiri was sweet, with a strong but well-blended rum flavor that I’m sure would have pleased its namesake.
The Lemongrass Vodka Gimlet was tart and lime-forward with a subtle vodka taste, which would make it perfect for a refreshing summer outdoors drink. And finally, the Real Lime Juice Margarita was also lime-forward, with slight hints of tequila and orange curacao in the aftertaste. It was a hit with my tasting partner, who declared it “Yum!” and said it was her favorite of the bunch.
All in all, these are a welcome addition to the increasingly popular canned cocktail phenomena. You’re getting top-shelf quality cocktails in a portable package, and at a reasonable price (around $4/can direct from their website), especially compared to what you would pay for something of this quality at a bar.
I’ll probably also keep a few of each in stock at my home bar for nights when I have company and don’t feel like going through the trouble of making the actual cocktail. I’ll spruce them up with crushed ice and some garnish, but being able to serve an impressively tasty cocktail in less than thirty seconds to a thirsty guest is a convenience that is well worth the cost.
Leonard Kinsey is the owner of Bamboo Forest Publishing, and the bestselling author of “The Dark Side of Disney”, the Anarchist Cookbook of Disney travel guides. He has lived in Baltimore for over 15 years, and enjoys drinking craft beer in unique places, eating nachos and pizza, listening to 80s hair metal, and arguing about Star Trek minutia, often all at the same time. Watch out ladies!